Who needs to sign the statement?
Did you move into a house in the Netherlands? And do you need to begin your integration process on 1 October 2017 or later? Then you must learn what’s important in the Netherlands, and sign the participation statement. But you don’t have to if you are aged under 18, or if you are entitled to a Dutch state pension (AOW).
At the municipality
The participation statement does not involve taking any DUO exams. The municipality decides what you need to learn and how to do it. The municipality will send you a letter.
What’s important in the Netherlands
When you prepare for the participation statement, you learn what is important in the Netherlands. You learn about how we deal with each other and why we do it that way. For instance:
- Everybody in the Netherlands is equal.
- Everybody may choose their own partner.
- Everybody may choose their own religion.
- Everybody is allowed to go to school.
- Everybody can say what they think. But it is not allowed to discriminate against somebody else.
- We take care of ourselves. But we also take care of each other. De government helps when needed.
Signing the statement
Have you learned what is important in the Netherlands? Then you sign the participation statement. By doing so, you state that you will actively participate in Dutch society and that you respect what is important in the Netherlands.
Within 1 year
You have 1 year to learn what is important in the Netherlands, and to sign the participation statement. This year begins when you register your new address with the municipality. Did you not sign the participation statement within 1 year? If so, you will have to pay a fine to DUO. And you will not be able to borrow money from DUO any more.
Are you obliged to integrate and are you an asylum migrant (refugee)? Or is your partner, parent or child an asylum migrant? Then you will get help from the municipality. The municipality can help you with things like:
- Practical problems with housing, care, work, money, insurance and school
- Getting settled in to your new place of residence
- Beginning the integration process
- Taking part in activities in the Netherlands.